The Log of the Flying Fish
This book has a firm place in British literature, for it was one of the very first in the genre of science-fiction.
A German professor, living for some reason in London, takes on some adventurous and rich Englishmen, and sets off with them in an airship that is made of a material so light that it can rise vertically into the air if you pump out some of the air in its ballast tanks. It can also plunge into the depths of the ocean, because this special material, aetherium, is so strong that it can withstand water pressure to a great depth.
In this vehicle they visit the North Pole, having several adventures on the way, including finding the remains of a Viking ship. They visit a region in Africa where they depose the existing King and install a King who is more to their taste. Then they head off for Mount Everest, where they become the first persons to sit on the summit. Here again they have more adventures of a perilous kind.
It's a good book, well worth reading, and I commend it to you.
Harry Collingwood (1851-1922). Pseudonym of William Joseph Cosens Lancaster, a civil engineer who specialised in seas and harbours.
A PDF of scans and an HTML version of this book are provided. We also provide a plain TEXT version and full instructions for using this to make your own audiobook. To find these click on the PDF, HTML or TXT links on the left.
These transcriptions of books by various nineteenth century authors of instructive books for teenagers, were made during the period 1997 to the present day by Athelstane e-Books. Most of the books are concerned with the sea, but in any case all will give a good idea of life in the nineteenth century, and sometimes earlier than that. This of course includes attitudes prevalent at the time, but frowned upon nowadays.
We used a Hewlett-Packard scanner, a Plustek OpticBook 3600 scanner or a Nikkon Coolpix 5700 camera to scan the pages. We then made a pdf which we used to assist with editing the OCRed text.
To make a text version we used TextBridge Pro 98 or ABBYY Finereader 7 or 8 to produce a first draft of the text, and Athelstane software to find misreads and improve the text. We proof-read the chapters, and then made a CD with the book read aloud by either Fonix ISpeak or TextAloud MP3. The last step enables us to hear and correct most of the errors that may have been missed by the other steps, as well as entertaining us during the work of transcription.
The resulting text can be read either here at the Internet Archive or at www.athelstane.co.uk
The PDF version is constructed from 300 dpi scans. To get best value set "Use Logical Page Numbers" to "ON" in Edit/Preferences/Page Display of your PDF viewer. To obtain the HTML file find the area on the left of this page which has PDF, HTML and TXT in it, and click on HTML. In this version the entire book appears in the one file, which also includes the style-sheet and any pictures, and is written in xhtml. The larger of the two TXT files is what you need to create an audiobook, using for instance Text Aloud MP3. The smaller of the two TXT files contains full instructions for doing so.
Uploaded by Nick Hodson on